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Sacred Bones


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Highly recommended.

Psychedelia is supposed to be boundless-- gobble enough indoles, and all the old categories start to dissolve, freeing you up for transcendence. Psychedelic warriors Föllakzoid hail from Santiago, Chile, but-- with their rigid rhythms, their chemtrail synths, their afterburner guitars-- their sound is pure Düsseldorf, circa 1971. But this krautrock-worshiping quartet's fascination with all things kosmische isn't merely musical: their primary concern seems to be untethering themselves from the earth. Their debut leaned toward desert rock, but the interplanetarily minded II is a bold shift in perspective from their earthbound origins, an all-out swing into a very different sound that follows its own alien logic. For Föllakzoid, though, space seems to be the place.

Vocalist Juan Pablo Rodrigues, with his unbudging deadpan, spends much of II playing the ghost in the machine. So when he starts muttering "is it getting lonely?" as "9" intensifies, you wind up feel in positively marooned, all alone while the track's latticework tightens. And even as the song lengths skirt double-digits, Föllakzoid's commands your attention. Just as you start to admire the music's weightless beauty of the synths and guitars, they seem to close in on you. While "Trees" throbs, guitarist Domingo Garcia-Huidobro provides the scenery, his massive, ever-expanding riff drawing up the topography of the cosmos. Keeping the rhythm section lean and the synths fairly sleek and steely might seem to put a lot of pressure on Garcia-Huidobro's guitar. But he, too, knows when to step up, and more importantly, when to hold back. This keen sense of drama means every time "Trees" brings that riff around again, it's not just a reprise, it's an event. "99" plays like a Dali painting, every surface ripples like a pond, every instrument double-helixing around itself.

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